Sunday, July 27, 2008

Sunday afternoon rainbows

Drew and I took our traditional errand run on Sunday night. We hit the book store, the grocery store and then Lowes. We parked at Lowes in the middle of a downpour. It was bad. I was looking for tornados and such. The two of us sitting and talking in the rain. He was scared of the thunder and lightening so he got to sit shotgun, which being a car-seat man for his entire life was a pretty big deal. We talked about "rain no hurt you" and "thunder no hurt you - it just loud" and so on.

Then a rainbow appeared.

It was the first rainbow I have seen this summer and it may be Drew's first. His only real understanding of rainbows are his watching his older sisters drawing pictures of them. We spent some time looking at it in the parking lot after the rain had subsided. He named off the colors he saw and talked about his favorite colors and how we should go inside soon because it might rain again.

Inside Lowes, the cashier struck up a conversation with Drew who provided her with details about the just witnessed rainbow, the colors, etc. It was basically the same conversation just more refined, better articulated. A future in sales for Drew?

So we settle up at Lowes, walk outside and Drew starts crying. No reason, just freaking out. The rainbow is gone. Daddy, where my rainbow. This was not good. I told him that rainbows don't stay very long, you need sunshine and rain and some science stuff that Dad doesn't remember.

Drew delt with it. He came to the conclusion, that the rainbow "had taken and a nap."

We'll see him later I told Drew. "Yeah Daddy, after his nap" he said.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Iowa Cubs Game

It was our company night at the Iowa Cubs AAA baseball game last night. My friend Phil took this great picture of Drew. Really captures him like no other picture I have seen. One of the guys in our group caught a foul ball and gave it to Drew. A really sweet gesture and Drew was thrilled.

There's something great about taking the family to a baseball game. I'm not sure if its because it reminds me of all the times my own father brought me to MLB Spring Training games in South Florida or just the simplicity of the event itself. Probably both.

Thursday, July 17, 2008


For the last two weeks the kids have been begging me to take them to McDonald's. Now I like me a Big Mac as much as the next guy but McDonald's is a place I usually try to avoid.

This trip to McDonald's I was assured by Bella and Caroline was special. They had some little pet shop toy or something in the happy meal. And Drew could get a boy toy, a Transformer beep beep. And, the promotion ended today I was told. So, off we went to McDonald's.

Daina was working so we went through the ritual we always go through before we get to McDonald's. The kids have three choices to make. Cheeseburger or Chicken Nuggets, french fries or apple dippers, white or chocolate milk. They made their choices and we were well prepared. Now typically I am a drive through man, but tonight they wanted to go inside McDonald's. Love the atmosphere there, great mood lighting, clean floor, tables so clean they sparkle. I caved and we went in.

Orders were placed, a booth by the window right next to the Red Box was selected. Back at the table with a tray full of food; packets of ketchup to open, open my toy, open my milk, I'll do my own straw, open my apples, open my caramel, I need more dip dip, I need a napkin, where are my nuggets, no Drew, that's my toy, you got a Transformer, and on and on. Once everyone was set there was more playing with the toys than actual eating going on.

An old friend of mine's father used to tell us at the dinner table. "Less talking. More eating." It was a good line and I realized that by using it I had become that guy. That father that wanted nothing more than a little peace and quiet over a meal, even if it was McDonald's. The kids were good, just excited and eventually ate their meal with a little begging from Dad.

As we ate I asked them how they knew the toys weren't going to be there tomorrow. That the "promotion ending" today seemed like way too much information for a five and seven year old to be losing sleep over. Bella told me, "We saw it on the TV, the TV told us." I just laughed and ate the rest of my now cold food. And yeah, we had to get a Red Box video for the kids. A Hannah Montana DVD filled the evening entertainment bill, and lucky for me, you and the rest of us, there were no McDonald's videos in the previews.

Monday, July 14, 2008


It's been a while since my last post. Perhaps I have been busy or the kids have been not as cute as this blog would make them out to be. Probably a combination of both.

For whatever reason, Caroline seems to cry whenever she doesn't get her way. This has been going on for about a month. I want this blanket, sorry, Drew had it first. Cry. I wanted to sit here. Sorry, Isabella is already sitting there. Cry. You get the idea.

Drew has other issues. His sisters will be quietly sitting watching Wow Wow Wubzy or some other show on Noggin and Drew will be invited to "snuggle" on the couch with them. This works for about all of 30 seconds until Drew decides he doesn't have enough room. Depending on where he is positioned this results in punch in the arm or a kick in the head for one of his sisters. When he gets in trouble, he acts like he was the one who got hit and cries. I keep putting him in timeout, so much so that the other day, he threw something at Caroline, some plastic pig toy and before I even said anything, he said "I'll go to timeout."

So I was reflecting on Drew and Caroline's behavior yesterday with Bella. I said, "Bella, why are your brother and sister so crazy and you are so good?" She told me, "Dad, I went to kindergarten, I learned about respect." My mood immediately improved.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The Smoothie

On Sunday, my mom who was visiting from Miami and I took the girls to the Des Moines Arts Festival. At some point during our time there the kids wanted a snack. I found a portable ATM machine which while portable, was also out of order. A glance into my wallet revealed all of $6. So I said to the kids, "I have $6, how about a smoothie?" They were game.

The guy at the smoothie booth (if there is such a thing) said smoothies were $6 each. I had to pause and consider the ramifications of buying one smoothie and having a 7 and 5 year old argue over whose turn it was for a sip. I declined.

"Girls, lets get something else. I am not going to spend $6 on a smoothie" I said, which was greeted by some whining, ah mans, and other unpleasantries. There groans were eliminated when I suggested ice cream. The ice cream booth (if there is such a thing) offered a variety of choices. Everything from $1, $1.50, $2 and $3. They both wanted Dove bars which were of course, $3 each. Their faces covered in chocolate proved that this was a successful turn of events.

Last night, the kids received a birthday package, in which, Bella and Caroline each received $20. As we sat in the backyard enjoying the kiddie pool, Bella and Caroline discussed the many ways in which they could spend their $20. We talked about the Arts Festival and what they liked the most about it. Doing arts and crafts topped the list, as did the Dove Bars. We talked how we could go again next year, and every year for that matter.

Bella says, "Dad, if I still have my $20 next year, can I buy a smoothie at the Art Festival? To which Caroline replied, "A smoothie? You want to spend your twenty dollars on a freaking smoothie?"